‘Gutted’ Cameron Smith and Shanice Budd-Smith, from Copnor, had been taking on extra hours at work to save up for their five-day trip to the Algarve in Portugal, just two days after they tied the knot at the Langstone Quays Resort in Hayling Island.
However, when they arrived at the EasyJet check-in desk at Gatwick Airport on the morning of May 22 they were shocked to learn Shanice wouldn’t be let into Portugal as her passport expires on August 10 this year.
It is Portugal’s policy that travellers must have at least three months left on their passports to enter the country, meaning Shanice missed out by just 13 days.
Postman Cameron, 27, said: ‘We had absolutely no idea this was a rule, I asked all my friends and family afterwards and they had no idea either.
‘When the woman told us we just couldn’t believe it.
‘The problem was she was also really rude and just said: “You’ll be deported if you go,” making us feel like criminals.
‘She didn’t care that we’d just lost our honeymoon at all, she was just trying to move us along.’
The pair had spent £500 on the trip, which they aren’t able to recover.
Shanice, 29, who works as a postwoman, said: ‘If your passport expires in August surely it should work up until then.
‘I didn’t know what to think when she first said it, I thought: “This can’t be happening.”
‘It was going to be our first holiday since 2019, we had worked so hard for it.
‘We would warn others to check the rules before flying.’
Instead the couple have a week of day trips lined up including Brighton, London and Longleat Safari Park.
An EasyJet holidays spokeswoman said: ‘We’re sorry to hear that these customers weren’t able to travel.
‘It’s really important that customers check that their passport is valid for their holiday and meets the criteria for their destination, which is why we remind our customers of this throughout their booking process and in the emails they receive leading up to their departure.’